UK Fertility Regulator Gives Clinic Go-Ahead to Create Three-Person Babies

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The UK Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority (HFEA) on Thursday granted permission to a Newcastle clinic to use DNA from three people during in vitro fertilization.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The technique allows the creation of embryos using female donor mitochondria, which generate energy in cells, to prevent faulty ones from being passed on by the mother. The alien DNA carryover is expected to be below two percent.

"I can confirm today that the HFEA has approved the first application by Newcastle Fertility at Life for the use of mitochondrial donation to treat patients," HFEA chair Sally Cheshire said in a statement on the authority's website.

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She said the decision came after many years of research that led the UK parliament to change a law on fertility treatment in 2015 to allow IVF clinics to be licensed to carry out techniques that treat genetic faults in mitochondrial DNA.

The regulator emphasized that the license only related to the Newcastle clinic’s capacity to perform the technique, and patients will have to apply individually to the HFEA to be allowed to undergo mitochondrial donation treatment.

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